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Schwab Cybersecurity Resources

Kelly HooverMarch 30, 2017

HFA News

Clients often ask us about the security policies for different vendors we use at HFA.  With mainstream news sources reporting frequently on cybercrime, it’s understandable that you may be hesitant about where to put your money.  Therefore, we are pleased to share some insights and resources to help answer these questions and ease your fears.  Today, we focus on the custodian of our client assets, Charles Schwab and Co., Inc. 

However, first we emphasize HFA’s commitment to safeguard your information and assets.  Our firm has policies and procedures in place to ensure that we take the necessary steps to help protect you and your family against unsafe requests.  Our firm has a very strict policy requiring each employee to verify any wire or money movement requests directly with the client before we process them, especially requests made through email.  We want to ensure transactions are as secure as possible.  HFA also has a strict due diligence process to ensure that we are using the safest technology providers. Our IT consultant monitors internal data to certify we are putting the best measures in place to keep client data safe.

As for Charles Schwab, we highlight its high level of commitment to cyber security, which is top notch in the industry.  Schwab has put together a site dedicated to helping clients understand this commitment.  The SchwabSafe® web page contains information, including a description of how they protect accounts at Schwab, what clients can do to keep their information safe, and the Schwab Security Guarantee.  This guarantee will cover 100% of any losses in a client’s Schwab account due to unauthorized activity.

Schwab works proactively to identify fraud and it has a strong culture of risk management to ensure client accounts at Schwab are protected in multiple ways.   It has designed and implemented a security program that knits together complementary tools, controls, and technologies to protect client accounts and data.  Schwab cyber security teams continuously monitor its systems and use vendors to scrutinize external sites to constantly adapt their own detection methodologies to reveal potential client account compromises.  Schwab also works collaboratively with government agencies, law enforcement, and other financial services firms to address potential threats and criminal activity. 

Like other firms, Schwab cannot publicize all of the details of its behind-the-scenes security measures and practices.  It is committed to making it more difficult for fraudsters to gain an edge by understanding the tools and techniques that are applied.

Despite these and other measures, cybercrime still happens. Being the victim is a frightening and stressful experience.  Therefore, HFA strives to be certain you have the necessary instructions for responding to such an event. This educational resource prioritizes actions that should be taken within the first 24-48 hours of discovering a breach, as well as the first week, first month, and beyond.  HFA is here to assist you through this process if you should ever find yourself in such a situation.

In an effort to continue to provide information on this subject, HFA’s Fall Client Educational seminar will feature cyber security.  The unfortunate truth is that 17.6 million people experienced identity theft in 2014 and billions of dollars have been stolen by fraudsters.  Therefore identity theft is a serious issue.  During our fall seminar we will share resources, which provide valuable information,  including common cyber security threats, how cyber criminals use stolen data, best practices you can implement to protect against cyber-attacks and other helpful solutions. HFA wants you to have the tools needed to set yourself up for success.  Please look forward to upcoming information regarding details of our fall seminar and let us know if you have any questions.

Disclosure:

Schwab Advisor Services™ serves independent investment advisors and includes the custody, trading, and support services of Schwab. Independent investment advisors, such as HFA, are not owned by, affiliated with, or supervised by Schwab.